Indoor Farming Company Bringing News Jobs To Breathitt County, Kentucky
By Morgan Henry
March 29, 2018
FRANKFORT, Ky. (WTVQ)-Governor Matt Bevin announced Thursday that startup indoor farming company Hydroponic Farms USA will invest more than $44.5 million in Eastern Kentuckys Breathitt County and create 121 jobs with the construction of a new facility on a reclaimed mine in Jackson.
Bevin says “The announcement of 121 full-time jobs in Breathitt County is wonderful news for Eastern Kentucky and its skilled workforce. It has been our administrations mission to provide better job opportunities in every part of our state, and this investment is evidence that we are achieving that goal. We are truly grateful for this vote of confidence in the commonwealth. Hydroponic Farms USA will be a great fit for the Jackson community, and continues the economic momentum that is building in Eastern Kentucky.”
Hydroponic Farms USA will build a nearly 42-acre facility with 35.5 acres of production space. The facility will use hydroponic and aeroponic technology to grow leafy greens, tomatoes, peppers and other produce. The 121 jobs will include leadership, production and post-production roles. Company leaders plan to break ground following their land purchase and approval of permits.
Tim Davis, the managing member of Hydroponic Farms USA, says “Appalachia has much to offer the world in terms of natural beauty and abundant resources, but what really makes this place special is its people. We knew the moment we set foot in Breathitt County, that this was not only a perfect place to build our business, but also a place we could proudly call home. Our investors have been humbled by the overwhelming support of Kentucky’s state and local government representatives. Moving forward, we are committed to building positive relationships with all of our new neighbors in Breathitt County and doing our part to create real opportunities for people. With the agronomic and technological expertise provided by our partners at Green Ag Technologies, we are proud to bring the future of farming to the area and make a significant impact on the produce industry.”
Hydroponic Farms USA says it is working to develop and implement advanced hydroponic and aeroponic technology and innovation. To do so, the company formed a partnership with Oz Agribusiness Projects and Investments Ltd. and Green Ag Technologies LLC to manage and operate the facility.
Hydroponic Farms USA will follow a similar business model to Kentucky Fresh Harvest, which broke ground in Lincoln County in January 2017 and also is managed by OAPI. Currently, the company is working with major retailers and wholesalers to secure contracts to supply their customers with fresh produce year-round.
Kentucky Commissioner of Agriculture Ryan Quarles says the project is a good fit within the commonwealths evolving agricultural profile.
Kentucky has a long tradition of being a leader when it comes to agricultural innovation, Commissioner Quarles said. Whether it is no-till corn, industrial hemp or hydroponic farms like this one, Kentucky agriculture continues to thrive. Todays announcement is the result of the hard work done by Governor Bevin and Think Kentucky to attract new and exciting businesses to our old Kentucky home.
In addition, Hydroponic Farms can receive resources from the Kentucky Skills Network. Through the Kentucky Skills Network, companies can receive no-cost recruitment and job placement services, reduced-cost customized training and job training incentives. In fiscal 2017, the Kentucky Skills Network provided training for more than 120,000 Kentuckians and 5,700 companies from a variety of industry sectors.